Back from the honeymoon. I wanted to finish my Thank You's before I posted about the recap.
The day (11/5/11) ROCKED. I married my best friend- so of course: Total Awesomeness. One thing that surprised me was that as the day got nearer; I got calmer. Maybe because we had some family drama the week before, I just became so focused on what was important; The celebration of marring my best friend of 15 years. My theme was fall leaves with a modern/relaxed feel. Colors: Bright Red & Bright Burnt Orange.
I woke up extra early to pack the truck to get all the stuff over to the hall (I did a lot of DIY.) It was funny, because I didn't think I had all that stuff and it never dawned on me that I wouldn't be able to take it all in one trip. (Thank God I had friends bring the soda/beer and cake.) Decorating went well. It took an hour longer than expected, but the park guy (Grant Park Wilo-o-way Building in South Milwaukee) didn't charge me extra. One thing that didn't work out was the LED lighting for the Chinese lanterns. My poor brother worked so hard to tape batteries to the lights and use fishing line all for the end result that you couldn't really see any light reflected---- but no biggie. Place still looked beautiful.
Side note: I got my Gerbera Daisies (Red/Orange/Yellow) from Sam's club online. I followed all the directions with the exception that I didn't use any flower food. They turned out beautiful. Making the bouquets for the MOH and me was a little challenging- but after a few trial and errors my sister-in-law and I did okay.
I had assigned table seating. DH & I just sat among the guests (no special table for us or WP.) I named each table by common Wisconsin trees and had them label by using pictures of the trees in fall foliage in wooden picture frames.
When I finished decorating the hall, I came home to spend time with DH before we started to get ready.... (we just sat on the couch with the TV off and talked for 2 hours.) I'm so happy we did that. So, after getting washed up; I went back to the hall with my dress waiting for my MOH. Another thing I didn't think about; I had to wait until she got there until I could put my dress on. I don't know why I thought I could put it on myself- another "duh" moment. But we all were ready at the same time by the time we did our first look pictures. (Oh and by the way, I am so happy I did that. It was another special moment and our small wedding party had a lot of fun just hanging out before the ceremony.) My good friend was our photographer. He is not a professional; but I gotta tell you- he could have fooled anyone. He's an artist- so extra points for creativity. He acted "very professional" and had some tricks up his sleeve. He even went the extra mile and rented a high-end camera from his art college photography department. Also, an AWE moment; DH had the hugest tear in one of his eyelids when he first saw me. It was so cute and funny because it was just in one eye and it was a huge tear.
Side note about my dress (Mori Lee- ivory Style 6601) I had some drama with looking for my dress. I fell in love with a past fashion season dress that I couldn't find anywhere on the web or in the stores. When I finally found my dress, I didn't have the "this is it" reaction that you hear about so much. I wondered if I was selling myself short by buying a dress I liked, but not gah gah over. Well, when I put it on, I got that feeling. Everything was suppose to be the way it was.
Here are my wedding "boots"
WP & I walked down to Moulin Rouge's "Come What May." I had DH and BM already at the "arbor-alter" before. It was Flower babies- my twin niece & nephew 16 months old (walked with their parents), another nephew as ring bearer (walked with parents also), MOH- step-daughter, who walked with step-son (who did the Native American Blessing as a reading for us) and then my Dad and I.
I wanted my brothers & sister-in-laws to walk with their children for 2 reasons: 1.) The kids were more comfortable 2.) It made them feel a part of the wedding, too.) (MOH & BM got to wear what they wanted to wear- and they looked fantasic!)
One opps: We didn't really time the song right (we had no rehearsal), but our friend who dj'ed, did a good job of fading out the music.
Ceremony- DH went into comedy mode; he later told me that he had to in order to fight back from turning into a crying mess. It was cute & funny. He was himself- since he's always funny! Officiant did an awesome job. Why wouldn't he? He was an old friend as well! We wrote the entire ceremony ourselves. When I finished my vows, DH said really loud "Awe, honey- I love you!" And he kissed me right there. I just looked at officiant and said "whoops!" Then DH is ready to read vows, he takes out a piece of paper and the paper is really long and rolls out down the asile. Too funny. We kissed and DJ played "What A Wonderful World/Somewhere Over The Rainbow."
(The girl in pink was a friend's daughter.)
Then people moved over to the dinner area where we had catered pig roast, brats, corn on the cob, and lots of side dishes buffet style. The food was awesome. They cooked the pig on site- which was neat, but a lot of guests had no idea since the caterer was off on the side of the building. Corn was not in season, but it was still good. We had plenty of food! One mistake I made: I bought different sparking juices for each table and we needed a beer bottle opener! Thankfully someone had one, but I would have had one at each table if I knew I needed one. Also, I bought way too much beer. I got a 1/2 barrell. I would have been better off just buying some bottles separtaley. I knew my guest don't drink much, but I freaked out after I was told on one of The Knot's message boards to buy more.
I ordered cake from the local Walmart. When I went to pick it up the night before, it wasn't ready at the time promised. So making an extra trip back was a little annoying. The second trip back, my heart fell to the ground. I wasn't happy the way it turned out. The cake decorator came out and told me immediately she wasn't happy either and that it was definitely not her best work. They offered me the cake half off, so I took it. When I got it to the hall, I placed some leaves made out of gum paste that I ordered from an ebayer. This made my cake look 100 times better and I received many compliments on it. I would just say that Walmart's definition of white cake is yellow to me; but I confirmed that it was indeed white cake. The butter-cream frosting was awesome and the cake was moist. So no complaints there.
Music: well we picked out all our music- and there was some dancing to Bell Biv Defoe's "Poison" and "Everybody was Kung Foo Fighting," ect. Most people were hanging out at the photobooth. Yes, we had one. I figured since we didn't hire a professional photographer, we could get some neat pictures of our guests this way (I didn't want my friend to have to take pictures during the reception.) I am so happy that we decided to do the photobooth. Everyone got into it. The only thing that didn't work out, is we couldn't fit my dad into the photobooth (he has a big electrical wheelchair that extends his feet out.) I wish I would have remembered this when we did a test run during set-up, but it just didn't cross my mind. I talked to my dad afterwards and he said he was disappointed, but was happy to hear that the photobooth company is going to make their booth bigger to accommodate bigger wheelchairs.
Clean-up: Thank god for friends. We were out of there in time.
My DH has been telling me just about everyday how our wedding was the best wedding ever and how everything was perfect. I agree!